The old model of higher education is to pack elite education into a few years before an individual is able to start a career. These core competencies are achieved in these formative years. Once the graduate has a job, learning is done on the job and specialties are achieved in an organic fashion. This is a very common sense approach to professional education. But is common sense a good measure of how best to prepare someone for a demanding career in the business world?
Harvard Business School doesn’t think so. They recognize that many professionals are finding that their core educations are not as relevant as they once were. The world is changing fast. The world of business is, in many ways, driving much of the change we experience. People entering these fields find that the demands of their jobs quickly exceed the limits of their education. For people hoping to exceed at all levels of their careers, it’s imperative to find a way to help them continue to learn throughout their careers.
This is the model that HBS is suggesting. They are initiating the process by offering an 8 week intensive learning program to business students of all ages on their historic campus. This is a change for professionals, in all industries, at all stages of their careers, to take time to reinvigorate their minds, before re-entering their careers. This is a collaborative environment with the world’s best educators and the world’s most curious minds. It provides new insights and methods by which professionals can keep the edge they had when they first entered their industry. This modular approach to education is one of the world’s most effective models for adults. For people working longer, with higher demands and an ever changing professional landscape, there simply has to be time set aside for focussed learning.